So, I'm trying to find examples in fiction where a being created by another surpasses the creator, and I'm having a hard time. Is this something that rarely happens in fiction? If not, I find it odd as I thought people enjoyed stories where one surpasses another. I thought Anakin Skywalker would fit this since he was "created" by Darth Plagueis, but it turns out that Anakin was actually created by the Force itself and there is no conceivable way that Anakin would be able to surpass pure cosmic energy. In the Elder Scrolls there is no example of a character being gifted power from a higher being and then later surpassing the entity that gave the power. The closest example I could find was Mannfred von Carstein from Warhammer surpassing Vlad von Carstein. However, in this situation Mannfred never outright beat Vlad and had to pull some dirty tricks to topple him, and from what I've gathered, Mannfred being stronger than Vlad mostly amounts to him knowing magic that Vlad doesn't. Even still, it's implied that Vlad could still be more powerful since most of the vampires leave Mannfred flock back to Vlad upon his resurrection.
Can a river swell higher than its source? A stream deeper or wider than the body from which it runs?
Cool question though.
How does Buu fit into this?
Oh hell, you're right. I thought Buu was always there and was just laying dormant but I just checked. That's a pretty good one.
Star Wars does it all the time with the Sith doesn’t it? I mean pretty sure in all the EU stuff there are sith apprentices killing their masters. Vader even kills the Emperor who arguably “created” him.
Anytime there’s a robot rebellion that destroys/enslaves its creators. (The Matrix, the Geth, the Sentinels in an alternate Marvelverse, Terminators, etc.)
Happens in Vampire stuff a lot. For example, in Anne Rice’s Queen of the Damned a bunch of vampires semi-led by Lestat killed “the mother of all vampires.”
I don't consider surpassing your master to be the same thing that I'm talking about. Unless the master is the one that gave you the power to begin with as is the case with vampires. Even if we consider that, how often do apprentices defeat their masters thorough power alone? Usually it's by means of subterfuge. In Vader's case, he just grabbed him from behind. At no point was Vader ever more powerful than Sidious.
I figured robots would be an easy example, but I'm thinking more along the lines of individual power than technological advancement.
But could any of them have done it individually?
The rule of two means every time there's a new Sith since the time where there was like thousands of them meant this happened.
And fewer people followed it as it went on. To my knowledge, Zannah was the only one that defeated her master in open combat. Plagueis's master died in a cave when he was crushed under rubble (Plagueis caused it but it still wasn't open combat). Sidious killed his master in his sleep, and Vader got his master from behind while he was getting off to torturing Luke.
I'd nominate Frankenstein by Mary Shelley. If you're only familiar with the story through the movies then you might dispute that the unnamed creation surpassed Victor Frankenstein. In the book, the creature is highly intelligent, and, while it might be disputed whether he is more intelligent than Victor Frankenstein, he is clearly superior physically. The creature is also superior to his creator emotionally, capable of great kindness. In Chapter 12, he secretly helps a poor family; the family members call him their "good spirit". Their attitude changes the instant they finally see his hideous visage. Such is human nature.
And, of course, he is capable of tremendous cruelty, as his creator learns to his sorrow.
In Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy, the computer Deep Thought that was designed to give us the ultimate answer to everything, which was 42, ended up designing the ultimate question that 42 is the answer to, creating a far more powerful supercomputer, which ended up becoming Earth.
Cronus was overthrown by his son, who he created and whose power he received from him.
Hercules, given power by the Gods, has proven to be more powerful than them on multiple occassions, such as saving them from Gaia's Giants.
In Christian Mythos, Jesus is still God, and thus has all that thing going on, but additionally can be used as a vessel to forgive mankind and generally is a better way to interact with the world.
Command Shepard MII is able to almost single-handedly bring down Cerberus, the organization that created him, in Mass Effect II.
The Sentinels in X Men are far more powerful than the military that created them, and wipe them out.
Ultron rebelled against his creator and defeated him, Antman, and then his own creation Vision was more powerful than him and defeated him.
In Incredibles, Syndrome is defeated by his Anti-Superhero Robot.
The Robots in the Matrix are far better than humanity in like, every single way, and easily defeat them for being dickheads.
Planet of the Apes had the genetically engineered apes overthrow mankind.
The robots in Westworld are able to kill a fair few security each and are better than the guys who created them.
The Elder things were wiped out by their slave species, the Shoggoth.
IG-88 from Star Wars was far greater than his creators, murdering all of them immediately and then taking over the death star until it's blown up in New Hope.
The creatures from the Island of Doctor Moreau are easily capable of overthrowing him when they stop being scared, given they're way better than him.
In Star Trek, the Klingons murdered their owns gods mythologically speaking.
In the new Wonder Woman, Ares killed the Greek Gods who created him.
In Warhammer 40k, the C'tan created the Necron out of the Necrontyr, and were murdered into submissive, broken apart and used as Pokemon afterwards.
The White Walkers of Game of Thrones had magical abilities that were way more powerful than their creators, the Children of the Forest, who were almost wiped out.
The Unsullied created by the Slave Masters easily wiped them out and were far, far more powerful than them.
The Transformers and Deceptacons were more powerful than the god that created them, destroying him.
Well I'm looking more for fantasy than sci-fi. Often times in sci-fi, when something is more powerful than the creator, it's due to design or design flaw.
The Androids in DBZ were built with the intent of destroying Goku, who Gero knew was very powerful. You can question the logic of creating Androids stronger than yourself, but it remains that this was done intentionally. Ultron was built to defend Earth from outside invaders, especially in the case that the Avengers fail to do so. It stands to reason that he'd be stronger than Ironman. Aside from that, it's typically a case of invention gone wrong. Most of the time the inventor is building something that will clearly be stronger than him.
What I'm looking for is someone becoming more powerful than their initial source. Like a god bestowing power to a disciple and the disciple managing to eclipse said god in power.
In DC Comics Doomsday (in case you don't know was the creature that killed Superman) was created by an alien scientist Bertram to be the ultimate survivor and then turned on Bertram and killed him for the horrific things he did to him in the process of creating him.
You could say Will Henry went *way* past Pellinor Warthrop/ Jack Kearns in The Monstrumologist.
Plates are for eat'n on, silly!
There's a fan theory that Darth Sidious (Palpatine) actually created Anakin. I'm not sure how well that theory holds up. How about the MCP in Tron? He's more powerful than his creator, Dillinger.